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Report: Russia open to British Petroleum share stake in Rosneft

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June 20, 2011, 6:20 p.m. | Russia and former Soviet Union — by Associated Press

Background from left: Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, Russian President Dmitry Medvedev and Kremlin adviser Arkady Dvorkovich hold talks at Nozny Novgorod Kremlin on Friday, June 10, 2011.
© AP

LONDON (AP) — A news report quotes a Russian official as saying that BP would be welcome to buy shares in oil company Rosneft when the Russian government sells its share stake. The Guardian newspaper on Monday quoted Arkady Dvorkovich, the chief economic policy adviser to President Demitry Medvedev, as saying the government may begin selling its shares next year, a year earlier than planned.

BP's share swap deal with Rosneft fell through because of opposition by BP's partners in a Russian joint venture, TNK-BP.

The deal with Rosneft would have given BP a stake in unexplored oil reserves beneath the Arctic Ocean.

The Guardian quoted Dvorkovich as saying the government wants to cut its stake in Rosneft below 50 percent.
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